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EMG Asks Permission to Resume Pumping Gas to Israel

Source: Al Masry Al Youm 7/27/2011, Location: Africa

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The East Mediterranean Gas (EMG), the company that exports Egyptian natural gas to Israel, has requested permission to resume pumping gas while negotiations continue on prices, Petroleum Ministry sources said.

The Sinai pipeline was blown up four times in less than four months, including twice in July, thereby halting the gas supply to Israel and other countries.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the ministry sources said company shareholders and their customers in Israel contend that entering into negotiations is illogical so long as Egypt fails to comply with its contractual obligations.

After the 25 January revolution, the Egyptian government managed to revise prices of three contracts with Jordan, Union Fenosa and British Gas, while negotiations with Gaz de France and East Mediterranean Gas continue.

Petroleum Minister Abdullah Ghorab said the government is keen on revising prices to match global benchmarks, but that Egypt’s position in the negotiations would be stronger if it first complied with its contractual obligations.

Israel rejects any price revision, saying prices were already raised to international levels last year. Israeli officials say Egypt receives more than US$3 per million British thermal units, while Egyptian officials refuse to deny or confirm the claim.

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